For all its warts and blemishes, the City of Glendale has managed to stop the bleeding - at least for now. It still has Camelback Ranch/Glendale to deal with. But, if there are detractors, they should be aware that the city is slowly building its fan base.
Like the planning of a sound business plan or the construction of a high-rise, sometimes it takes a bit longer to figure out where to spend, when to cut, and how to lay that foundation pillar.
Mostly, it takes making a decision on who to hire to take the wheel of this city that never seems to stop growing. Yes, neighbors to the east and west are rapidly adding to their census numbers. But, Glendale will soon add its own numbers to the far West Valley along Loop 303. This is no country bumpkin wasteland we’re talking about. This is a lot of acreage with rich soil, and even richer rewards for the City of Glendale in the coming years and decades.
Certainly, it’s a lot of residential roofs. Definitely a lure to businesses that want to build a future for their employees. But economists are always warning not to count those roofs for positive bank balances. It’s the revenue producing commercial enterprises that bring in the tax revenues.
The city is, nonetheless, attempting to right the ship, and its negotiations with the Arizona Coyotes is a good example of taxpayer dollars stewardship.
Although there are critics who warn the Coyotes will move and leave the city with an empty and dated arena, there are challenges every day and there are people on board at City Hall who will be asked to do more if the Coyotes leave.
Yet, sometimes city leaders need to say, “Enough is enough, our citizens need to come first.”
One way to say that is to start looking at any so-called sports agreement as a future white elephant. There is not one major league sports team owner out there who wants to build their own stadium or arena. Not one. If they did not have cities slathering at the mouth to get their teams, they would be hard-pressed to build a tent, much less offer a contract for unlimited Samurai swords at the anniversary of a contract.
It is time for Glendale to take the lead in this effort to reduce the pressure on a wound that is about to fester and spread.
Efforts have always been ongoing with regard to Camelback Ranch/Glendale. But, before another dollar is spent trying to gain some advantage, ask citizens what they would like to do with a stadium the city does not own but for which, still owes almost $400 million. That’s a scary figure.
Yes, the city has a few problems to solve, not the least of which is debt. But with new leadership in the city manager’s office, it’s time to raise the bar for city employees and learn how to lower the debt.